Share market continues to gain ground

The share market has advanced for the 10th day in a row and remains at levels not seen since April 2011.

The All Ordinaries index rose by eight points to 4,919, while the ASX 200 index gained the same amount to 4,897.

The market is now up more than 5 per cent already this year.

Wesfarmers shares dropped 1.8 per cent to close at $38.13 after .

Food and liquor sales at its Coles supermarkets grew by 3.9 per cent in the December quarter, while sales at its Bunnings and Kmart stores also grew.

There were broad losses elsewhere in the retail sector; Woolworths lost 0.7 per cent and Myer lost 2.33 per cent.

Rare earths miner Lynas gained 2.33 per cent to 66 cents.

The company says Malaysia's high court has denied a bid by protesters to block operations at its rare earths plant.

The major banks gave up early gains after Prime Minister for September 14.

The big four banks all touched multi-year highs yesterday but ANZ was the only bank to rise today, up 0.25 per cent.

Mining stocks lifted trade, helped by a rise in copper prices.

BHP Billiton gained 1.2 per cent, Rio Tinto added 1.5 per cent and Fortescue Metals put on 0.9 per cent.

Qantas lost 1 per cent amid newspaper reports that a consortium led by former chief Geoff Dixon and investor Mark Carnegie had sold its stake in the company.

Telstra shed 1 per cent to $4.59.

Around 5pm (AEDT) spot gold was higher at $US1,667 an ounce, West Texas crude oil was also slightly higher at $US97.60 a barrel, while Tapis crude was buying $US120.90 a barrel.

The Australian dollar gained ground against most of its major counterparts after Ms Gillard's announcement.

Around 5pm it was buying 104.7 US cents, 77.6 euro cents, 95.2 Japanese yen and 66.5 British pence.

Market Data

  • Currencies
    Currencies
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    0.9278-0.0087-0.93%
    AUDUSD=X
    0.5519-0.0047-0.85%
    AUDGBP=X
    0.6702-0.0082-1.21%
    AUDEUR=X
  • Commodities
    Commodities
    NamePriceChange% Chg